Home | About Us | Subscriptions | Advertising | El Centinela
Catholic Sentinel | Portland, OR Thursday, February 11, 2016
CYO Football 2015 2015 Priest Reassignments, Archdiocese of Portland Cardinal Francis George dies Mothering with faith Sisters of the Holy Names, 2015 Live Nativity at St. John the Baptist 2014 Fall CYO results Catholic Charities Donor Lunch 2014 Year of Consecrated Life opening Mass Holy Spirit Sisters Jubilee 2014 Seaside youth conference Mount Angel 125th Northwest Hub Furlow at papal Mass 2014 Rosary Bowl NW Brother André 2014 Fall 40 Days for Life 2014 Inauguration of Fr. Mark Poorman Coffee shop at abbey First day of school, 2014 Regis High School 50th anniversary 2014 Crooked Finger Pilgrimage Mass with migrant farm workers Maronite Ordination Consecration to "Immaculate Heart of Our Lady of Fatima" CYO track Southern Oregon Evangelization 2014 Priest Ordination Christ the King youth 2014 priest reassignments Our Lady of Lavang Confirmation, 2014 Memorial Day 2014 2014 Transitional deacon ordination Padre Foster Granados visits Albany Bishop Smith ordination Canonization of Pope John Paul II, Pope John XXIII Bishop Peter Smith 2014 Easter Vigil 2014 Walk of Cross 2014 Chrism Mass CYO basketball 2014 St. Patrick of the Forest 150th Catholic Charities Celebration of Hope, 2014 Boys2Men Archbishop visits Oregon State Penitentiary 40 Day Vigil for Life, 2014 Pope Francis creates new cardinals St. Henry shelter 2014 CYO swimming Funeral of Fr. George Wolf Travel on a budget Lunar New Year, 2014 Tech in Catholic schools 2014 Right to Life Rally Archbishop visits Santiam Prison First Mass in Oregon Milwaukie Posada St. Francis, Sherwood, Toy Drive Central Catholic football Typhoon Haiyan Deacon Ordination/ Kresbach, Schmitt A Catholic fisherman St. Cecilia Centennial Southern Oregon Welcome Mass Shepherd of the Valley, Central Point, dedication Grotto Anniversary 2013 Champions of Faith Dinner Gardenripe farms Coleman hop farm Corvallis Year of Faith Archbishop Howard at St. Rose Hitchhiking priests Franciscan Spiritual Center Sacred Heart, Medford Migrant Mass Tanzanians' jubilee World Youth Day 2013 2013 Blessing of the Animals 2013 Freedom Mass Albany school closure Fabric art Megan graduates from Catholic school St. Vincent de Paul Hillsboro 2013 Deacon ordination Sister Theresa Lamkin St. Helen Mission, Brownsville Marist Brainiacs St. Mary, Eugene St. Francis eighth graders Ascension confirmation 2013 Pastoral Ministry Conference St. Joseph Salem — Year of Faith Archbishop Sample's Installation Mass 2013 Archbishop Sample Chrism Mass 2013 2013 Young Catholics Pope Francis inauguration Celebration of Hope Vlazny Farewell Mass Archbishop Vlazny Farewell St. Paul Church in St. Paul Valley Catholic Green Building Rite of Election 2013 Water summit 2013 Lunar New Year Alveda King in Eugene New Monsignors, 2013 2013 Right to Life Rally MLK Mass, 2013 St. Henry, Gresham, Centennial Jesuit High drama School uniforms Friar in the mall Holy Trinity food ministry January Book Covers St. Andre Bessette food Year of Faith Mass Nestucca Sanctuary Hillsboro Choirs Father Betschart installation Salem Religious Freedom Rally Year of Faith Vespers, Awards Roy's Catholic School Adelante Mujeres 10th anniversary New Blanchet House Missionaries of Holy Spirit Priest, religious photos Providence Nursing Schools Pioneros Fortnight for Freedom Mark Bentz Deacon Ordination OLL School Walk Through Gaga over science St. Philip Neri Centennial Ordination of Bishop Cary SVDP, Grants Pass Holy Cross School centennial Confirmation - Mount Angel Holy Land Pilgrimage Blanchet Watershed Chrism Mass, 2012 Bishop-designate Cary Pope in Cuba, 2012 SSMO 125th Jubilee Mass Pope Benedict in Mexico 2012 Catholic Charities Celebration 2012 Madeleine Mardi Gras Centennial Rally for Life, 2012 Martin Luther King Jr. Mass 2012 Day Laborers-Guadalupe Guadalupe 2011 Christ the King, Milwaukie, 50th Sesame Doughnuts Central Catholic Volleyball St. Peter Centennial Deacon Ordination, October 2011 St. Agatha Centennial Rosary Bowl 2011 St. Wenceslaus, Scappoose, Centennial Filipino celebration Polish Festival 2011 Holy War Football 2011 World Youth Day 2011 Sun Gold Farm Our Lady of Victory's New Church Freedom Mass 2011 St. Mary Church Steeple Removal Priest reassignments, 2011 Old Catholic Buildings Paige Rice, St. Mary's runner Graduation 2011 Easter vigils 2011 Pastoral Ministry Conference Basketball Holy War 2011 Search for Peace 2011

Holy Redeemer Open House 2016

Home : News : Nation and World
Romanian Catholic priest gets two years in prison for money theft
Catholic News Service


CLEVELAND — A priest of the Romanian Catholic Diocese of St. George was sentenced to two years in prison for stealing from the coffers of the parish where he served and from an 89-year-old parishioner who entrusted him to oversee her finances.

Father Andre A. Matthews, 54, former pastor of St. Helena Romanian Catholic Parish in Cleveland, was sentenced Oct. 30. He pleaded guilty in June to stealing $176,000 from the parish and more than $100,000 from parishioner Aurelia Papp.

Romanian Bishop John M. Botean of St. George, based in Canton, Ohio, suspended Father Matthews from active ministry after his guilty plea. He had been placed on a leave of absence after an investigation into the thefts began in 2011. He subsequently resigned his position with the parish.

Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court Judge Richard McMonagle handed down the sentence after hearing from Papp and the president of the parish council.

McMonagle also ordered Father Matthews to make restitution to Papp and the parish.

With the court case concluded, Father Matthews will face a separate church-based ecclesiastical tribunal for trial, the Diocese of St. George said in a statement.

"Until the final decision of these ecclesiastical tribunals, Father Matthews remains suspended from priestly ministry. He was and is forbidden to celebrate any sacraments or present himself as a priest," said Father Chris Terhes, director of communications for the diocese.

Bishop Botean called the allegations a "shock and heartbreak" to all affiliated with the diocese.

"The church owes a debt of gratitude to the parishioners of St. Helena and to everyone who worked hard to bring this situation to light. We also are most grateful to the civil authorities, without whose efforts it would have been very difficult for us to discover the facts of the case," the bishop said.

"This kind of action on the part of a trusted pastor and minister of the church cannot, and will not be tolerated. We deeply regret the pain and loss suffered by so many of our faithful as a result of the actions of one priest. The diocese is looking forward to full restitution to St. Helena of any amounts that the state found at issue and owing to the parish," he added.

During the sentencing hearing, Fabian Barbolovici, president of the St. Helena parish council, told the court that parishioners felt humiliated and betrayed by the years of theft and by learning that the priest also was secretly married and fathered two children, cleveland.com reported.

The parish leader said through an interpreter that Father Matthews had introduced his wife as his cousin, a poor single mother with two children who later became treasurer of the church. He said parishioners are experiencing "very deep suffering," especially because they placed greater faith in the priest "than politicians or teachers or policemen."

Assistant County Prosecutor James Gutierrez said Matthews began stealing from Papp after he was removed from ministry. He said the priest used the money to pay a mortgage, credit card charges and college tuition for his children.

Papp, who entered the courtroom in a wheelchair, told McMonagle she had trusted the priest to manage her financial affairs, but that she was "deceived."

St. Helena Parish was established in 1905 and is the first and oldest Romanian Catholic community in the United States.





Advanced Search










Mary Jo Tully ~ The Path to Resurrection

News | Viewpoints | Faith & Spirituality | Parish and School Life | Entertainment | Obituaries | Find Churches and Schools | About Us | Subscriptions | Advertising
E-Newsletter | RSS Feeds

© 2016 Catholic Sentinel, a service of Oregon Catholic Press

Software © 1998-2016 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved